What can I do to improve poor water pressure?

Before you call the plumber, try to identify the problems with low water pressure in your home.
Usually, you can diagnose low water pressure problems easily. Though you may have to call a professional plumber eventually to fix them, you can do your part in attempting to identify poor water pressure problems.

Clean your faucet and showerhead aerator screens.
If you can determine that low water pressure is isolated to a single faucet or showerhead, you'll probably discover you have dirty, clogged aerator screens. Make sure you disassemble and clean these aerator screens regularly to keep the water flowing freely.

Replace your showerhead with one that increases water pressure.
You can find cheap, high-pressure showerheads at your local home center, and that may be all you need to assure that you can actually stand in the middle of your shower to bathe. If your existing showerhead has a flow restrictor in place, try to remove it to increase water pressure right away as another possible alternative.

Check the home valves.
Did you or someone else accidentally turn off any of the two main water valves of the home? Check the meter box for the customer valve to make sure it's in the "on" position and that all home valves near hose bibs (the faucets you see on the exterior of homes for garden hoses and inside homes near washing machines) are also in the "on" position.

Check to see if it's an issue with the public supply.
If you have frequent low water pressure (especially, in a second floor or higher location), talk to your neighbors to see if they have low pressure, too. If they do, the low water pressure very well could be an issue with the public supply. Contact the county/city to see if they're aware of the problem and ask them to fix it. They may send someone out to check your water meter just as a precaution.

Plan to shower at 3:00 am.
All joking aside, your lack of water pressure could be attributed to you and all your neighbors using water during peak periods of the day. Try changing your schedule when you use large amounts of water at once-for example, with showering or watering your grass.

Consult the services of a professional plumber.
Once you've tried the simpler methods of increasing your home's water pressure with little to no success, your best bet is to contact a professional plumber who might help you by:

  • Installing a water pressure booster. A water pressure booster is simply a water pump that works with the existing water supply and helps to increase water pressure inside the home.
  • Determining if there are any major plumbing problems. If you have a single pipe that bursts and results in a leak, it will affect the water pressure in the house significantly (and potentially cause you to owe more money to your water company over time). Try shutting off the water taps both inside and outside your home, and then check your water meter. Come back a few hours later to read the water meter once more, and then determine if the water usage has increased. If so, you've probably got a leak somewhere that a professional plumber needs to address.
  • Increasing the size of the main pipe servicing the house. See if you can determine what type of water pipes you have in the home and running to your water meter. Pipe size plays a major factor as to the amount of water pressure you'll get in your home. The larger the pipes, the greater the water pressure, so you might want to consider increasing the size of the main pipe servicing the house. Be prepared for the hefty bill, though, as this job is very expensive and should be considered a last resort.
To find excellent professional plumbers in your area, search Kudzu.com.

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